GINA

Meet the Team​

Dedicated to providing near real-time satellite products

Jen Delamere

Jen Delamere

Director of GINA

Associate Research Professor
(Snow, Ice, and Permafrost Group at the Geophysical Institute)

I study the Arctic environment, from the ground and space, with instruments and computers. Throughout my career in the atmospheric and snow sciences, a central theme has been the utilization of an incredible array of data available from ground to space to study our Arctic environment. As an early career researcher, I focused on atmospheric radiation model development and intercomparisons with ground-based measurements from a DOE ARM facility on the North Slope of Alaska. I still continue developing successive generations of rapid radiative transfer models (RRTMGP) at UAF, two decades later. Over the past few years, I have pursued new research topics, including the study of snow-cover characteristics and albedo, as well as precipitation measurement techniques, on the North Slope of Alaska with Dr. Matthew Sturm of the SIP group. In 2020, I had the great fortune also to become the Director of GINA, where I am charged with ensuring rapid delivery of direct broadcast data and products from polar-orbiting satellite to forecasting partners and communities across Alaska. I have worked in industry and academia, and I have been self-employed, all while pursuing my science interests. My career path has been anything but traditional, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. 

HUNTER BARNDT

Research Programmer -UAF Undergrad

Hunter is an undergraduate student at UAF majoring in Physics and Computer Science. His main area of study has been space plasmas but is learning a lot about the Arctic while at GINA. He helps with special programming and research-related projects, with his primary goals being retrieving and handling satellite-retrieved snow data. He was born and raised in Alaska, really enjoys being outdoors, especially with his dogs, and likes to play the piano.

Jay Cable

System Analyst

Jay Cable is a Research and Web Programmer for GINA. He helps operate GINA’s satellite ground stations and performs programming on special projects. He has worked with a wide array of programming languages including Java, C, Ruby, JavaScript, and Perl. Jay has a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and someday hopes to complete his M.S.

Carl Dierking photo

Carl Dierking

Satellite Liaison

Carl is a meteorologist working for GINA as a satellite liaison, developer, and trainer. He previously worked for the National Weather Service for nearly 40 years as a forecaster and Science Operations Officer. This experience provides insight into the satellite needs of operational weather forecasters in Alaska, with a focus on the development of tools and training that assists in the transition from research to operations.

Elizabeth-Fernandez

Elizabeth fernandeZ

Natural Resources & GIS Technician

After graduating from UC Berkeley with a B.S. in Forestry & Natural Resources and a minor in Geospatial Information Systems, Elizabeth worked a variety of jobs in Northern California before coming to Fairbanks to work on Interior Alaska’s Forest Inventory & Analysis measurements programs. With past experience working in the timber industry, natural resource consulting, and geospatial research, Elizabeth is interested in utilizing geospatial programs to do further research on natural resource systems.

ChrisSmith

CHRIS SMITH

Geospatial Data Analyst

Chris holds a B.S. in Natural Resources Management and a M.S in Geosciences from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. His thesis research focused on how remote sensing techniques can improve fire fuel and burn severity maps to better understand and predict fire behavior in the Alaska boreal forest. Chris is interested in employing remote sensing techniques to help solve natural resource and natural hazard challenges faced by local communities by generating high quality products that can be used to help overcome these challenges.

Phillip Wilson

Research Technician
Phillip recently graduated from UAF with a BS in Geology and a minor in GIS. During his undergraduate career he conducted four years of URSA funded research to reconstruct the timing and extent of the prehistoric surges of the Black Rapids Glacier and is working towards finalizing and publishing these results. Phillip has experience working as a Field and Data Technician for Geo-Watersheds Scientific since 2013, including groundwater contamination, data networks, instrumentation, and UAS research across Alaska. Currently, Phillip volunteers as the chair of the Eastern Alaska Range Avalanche Center, works as a Cryospheric Research Technician in the Geophysical Institute: Snow, Ice, and Permafrost Group and assists the GINA team with data processing.

Milton Wiltse

Affiliate Professor
Milt is an Affiliate Research Professor with the University of Alaska Geographic Information Network (GINA) group within the Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. His research interests are focused on using GIS and machine learning to extract new information from Alaska’s legacy geologic data pertinent to identify prospective mineralized tracts. He has a B.A. Degree in geology from the University of Pennsylvania, a Ph.D. in geology from Indiana University and 52 years minerals related geologic experience. Prior to his current work at Gina he was a geologist, geochemist, State Geologist and Director of the Alaska Division of Geologic & Geophysical Surveys. Before his time at DGGS, he was a faculty member of the Colorado School of Mines – Geology Department where he taught courses in ore microscopy, petrology, geologic mapping, and theoretical geochemistry of ore deposits. During an extended leave from DGGS in the 1970s Milt worked as a consultant geologist conducting mineral exploration in Alaska and the Southwestern United States.

Greg Wirth

Systems Administrator

Greg Wirth is GINA’s lead systems administrator, responsible for support and maintenance of near real-time operational systems. Greg makes sure data passes through each processing computer seamlessly, every day of the year.

UAF Collaborators

Jeremiah Dabney

Systems Administrator

Jeremiah Dabney is an employee of the Research Computing Systems group at the Geophysical Institute, and he specializes in Linux system administration. Jeremiah assists GINA with our near real-time processing stack, ensuring data products are delivered quickly to Alaska’s operations and research community.

Pete Hickman

GIS Specialist

Pete Hickman is an expert GIS practitioner who has worked as a GIS project & team manager, consultant, and trainer. Pete is fluent using a wide variety of geospatial data management and analysis tools across many operating systems, as well as scripting tool development and process automation. As an ESRI certified trainer from 2003 until ESRI ended their Certified Training Program in 2016, Pete has trained hundreds, if not thousands, of Alaska’s GIS end-users over these years. During his 13 years with GINA, Pete has authored successful proposals to many local and state agencies. He has worked as a data manager for the Statewide Digital Mapping Initiative, and as the lead GIS data manager for the Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Study, curating geospatial data from 16 consulting firms doing work over three years of the study. Recently, Pete has been working in partnership with AKDOT to assist with development of and validation of Low Distortion Projections for Alaska, urban stormwater modeling, and sUAS data processing using SfM techniques. Pete currently works at GeoNorth Information Systems.

Charlie Parr

Snow Scientist

Charlie Parr works at the intersection of snow and geospatial science to create knowledge that enhances understanding of the Arctic. He is a veteran of several snowmobile science expeditions spanning thousands of miles in the Brooks Range and seeks to use that field experience of snow processes and properties to enhance the satellite snow remote sensing efforts at GINA.